How Can I Legally Protect Myself From a Violent Spouse/Relative?
Personal Injury Lawyer
No one should have to live in constant fear for their life. If you worry that a violent spouse or relative might attack you, there are legal ways to protect yourself. You don’t need to just keep your head down and carry on.
Domestic Violence and Protecting Yourself
There’s no reason for you to constantly deal with an estranged family member or violent spouse who makes threats, stalks you, or endangers you in any way. The criminal code of the state of West Virginia can legally protect you against violence from a relative, including a spouse. This code applies to the following acts:
- Creating fear of physical harm to you. This can be via stalking, psychological abuse, verbal threats, threatening acts, or harassment.
- Actually attempting to or causing physical harm to you either knowingly, intentionally, or even recklessly. This applies to situations involving dangerous/deadly weapons and even those without.
- Putting you in a position that causes you “reasonable apprehension of physical harm.”
- Sexually abusing you
- Sexually assaulting you
- Detaining/confining/holding/abducting you against your will
If you have been in any of these situations or live in fear of them happening to you as a result of the behavior, words, or action of the relative, you can get our legal support to help you.
What a Domestic Violence Protection Order Can Do
We can help with filing a domestic violence petition and obtain a Domestic Violence Protective Order.
- This prevents the abuser, by law, from abusing, harassing, stalking, or intimidating, you as well as causing you to have a fear of bodily injury. This will apply to you and anyone you include in your petition like your children.
- It also prevents the abuser from possessing a firearm/ammunition as long as the order is in place.
- Additional terms are mandated by the court based on your specific requests. For instance, you might want temporary full custody of the children or could request for the abuser to be prevented from entering the children’s school, your home, or your place of employment.
Violation of the terms of the order is considered a criminal offense and makes the abuser liable for criminal prosecution.
Who is Covered by West Virginia Domestic Violence Laws?
For these laws to hold, however, you must be related to the other party in one of the following ways:
- Be married currently/have been married earlier
- Be currently living together in the same household/have been doing so earlier
- Are/were sexual partners or dating
- Be parents to a common child
- Be related. Applies to familial relationships like parents, step-parents, grandparents, step-grandparents, brothers/sisters(whole/half), in-laws(father/mother-in-law, daughter/son-in-law), aunts/uncles, step-aunts/uncles, nieces/nephews, step-nieces/nephews, first/second cousins.
If you’re being threatened by a spouse and need assistance with a divorce, we can help you with commencing a divorce proceeding, as well. Get the legal protection you need from a family lawyer trusts to keep yourself and your family out of harm’s way.